Monday, 17 July 2017

What I Did For My 22nd Birthday: The Ritz

My birthday on the 5th of July, just incase you forgot, feels both fresh in my mind but also a distant memory as I write this post. The thrill of the unexpected surprise surpassed me so quickly that I wish I could go back and relive this special moment all over again. My parents and sister turned up at my door after informing me with only a dress-code and a 'don't have a big lunch' comment to go on, there was no way in my wildest dreams I would have guessed I was heading to The Ritz.

Not so long ago my Dad treated my Mum for their anniversary to an overnight stay at one of London's finest hotels. I vividly remember them returning with pictures of their 5 star experience which captured my heart from the moment I set eyes on them. From that point on both my sister and I would constantly bring up when it was our turn to go alongside questioning why we weren't invited the first time round! 

Alighting at Green Park I still had no idea or indication where we were going until walking up the steps, my eyes fixated on the glowing sign. With a glimmer of hope I instantly turned to my mum giggling saying "no way", for her to humour me by responding "we are just walking past". Located in the heart of London next to some of the cities well known attractions I couldn't be sure. With a short walk and a right turn we were at the revolving door entrance and I felt the need to pinch myself. I also mentally ticked it off my bucket list. 

Walking in the steps of prime minsters, celebrities and even royals, it hosts a variety of distinguished guests and now me. As always I was fascinated by the interiors and the 'no expense spared' term came to mind. The flower displays were perfectly presented with a few of my favourites in every arrangement. The opulence did not stop there with chandeliers, mirrored walls and gold detailing. We were seated at our table with soft yellow chairs in the ever popular Palm Court.
We made it in time for our 7:30 not so afternoon tea booking, the last of the day. First we were tasked with selecting a tea of our choice out of the 18 options. I chose the Camomile Flowers which has calming and delicate infusion of natural camomile with a floral aroma and sweet, soothing flavour. Whilst my sister went for Passion Fruit and Orange which has a sweet orange peel blended with passion fruit and orange segments - which I tasted and can report it is incredible, and my parents opted for a more classic Earl Grey. 

Once we were settled in to our seats and the initial shock of my birthday surprise had dawned upon me, I began to relax with a little help from the musical ensemble. With a resident pianist and harpist on site, we were lucky enough to enjoy live music with a wonderful female singer. This was an afternoon tea like I had never experienced before, it was simply put, the best. Within no time our selection of sandwiches, freshly baked raisin and plain scones and assortment of pastries and cake had arrived. With a side serving of cornish clotted cream and strawberry preserve, all you mouths are watering now right? As you can imagine it was both to my delight and the thought process of can I fit anything else in when they brought out the extra specials of the day. After requesting the smallest slice known to man which tasted heavenly, it was an incredible way to bring to end an unforgettable evening.

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I feel very fortunate to have spent my 22nd birthday in such a memorable way and if you're blue and you don't know where to go to, why don't you go where fashion sits? Puttin' on the Ritz.


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